NHL Draft 2024: When Is It?, First Pick Predictions & What We Know So Far

As the NHL season reaches its climax, the annual Draft is a cornerstone event that helps shape the future of the teams and the league at large. As we look ahead to the 2024 NHL Draft, there are several intriguing storylines and questions emerging. We’lll explore when and where the draft will take place, delve into predictions about which team might secure the first pick, and highlight some of the top prospects expected to make waves.


When is the NHL Draft?

The 2024 NHL Draft is expected to take place June. 28-29, following the tradition of being held shortly after the Stanley Cup Playoffs conclude. While the exact dates and location have not yet been officially announced, the draft usually occurs over two days and is a significant event in the NHL offseason calendar.


Predicted Location for the 2024 NHL Draft

The location for the NHL Draft changes annually, with the league selecting cities that are enthusiastic about hockey and have the facilities to host such a significant event. Cities like Toronto, Montreal, and New York are often in the rotation, and there’s always the possibility of the NHL choosing a city that has a strong connection to hockey growth or a recent expansion team looking to boost their local fan engagement. However the most likely location for the 2024 NHL draft is at the Sphere in Las Vegas. 


Who Has First Pick in the 2024 NHL Draft?

The team that will have the first pick in the 2024 NHL Draft will be determined by the NHL Draft Lottery, which typically occurs a few weeks before the draft. Chicago Blackhawks had that honor in 2023. This lottery system gives the teams that did not qualify for the playoffs a chance to win the top pick, thereby helping to balance team competitiveness across the league.


Potential Teams for the First Pick

As of now, it’s difficult to predict which team will land the first pick without current season standings or performance. However, teams that are in a rebuilding phase or have had a run of poor performances might have higher odds in the lottery. These could include franchises like the Arizona Coyotes or the Chicago Blackhawks, depending on their 2023-2024 season outcomes.


Top Prospects in the 2024 NHL Draft

Looking ahead to the prospects, the 2024 draft class is shaping up to be extremely promising, with several young stars poised to make an impact. While specific standout players will emerge as the season progresses, scouts typically keep an eye on emerging talents from major junior leagues, the NCAA, and European leagues. Macklin Celebrini is predicted to be the first player snapped up. Other top prospects such as Ivan Demidov and Artyom Levshunov are predicted to be drafted early in the NHL futures betting odds.


Key Areas of Focus

Skill Positions: Teams will be looking for franchise centers or dynamic defensemen, which are often seen as pivotal pieces in building a competitive team.

Goal Scorers and Playmakers: As the game continues to emphasize speed and skill, players who can contribute offensively will be highly sought after.


What Teams Need to Focus On

As the draft approaches, NHL teams will be evaluating their needs, focusing on depth, and potentially looking for players who can step into their lineups sooner rather than later. The draft strategy will vary greatly among teams, with some opting for the best player available while others focus on specific positional needs.


Expectations and Predictions

Predicting exact outcomes of the draft is always a challenge due to the complexities of the draft lottery, trades, and individual team strategies. However, the 2024 NHL Draft is expected to be a highly competitive and strategic event, with teams eager to select players who can alter the course of their franchises.


Looking Ahead To The 2024 NHL Draft

As we edge closer to the 2024 NHL Draft, the anticipation and speculation will only increase. This event is not just about selecting young talents; it’s about hope, strategy, and the future of NHL teams. Whether you’re a seasoned analyst or a passionate fan, the draft promises to be a highlight of the hockey calendar, packed with surprises, strategic decisions, and the excitement of new beginnings.


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